How do I become Buddhist?

Whether you're exploring Buddhism for the first time or you're already on the path, feel free to ask questions of any kind here.

Re: Zen Buddhism

Postby Seishin » Sat Jan 11, 2014 10:15 pm

LastLegend wrote:Friend, start with the teaching first understand it thoroughly before starting to practice.


Knowledge and practice are both essential for the path. One shouldn't favour one over the other.

Gassho,
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Re: Zen Buddhism

Postby LastLegend » Sat Jan 11, 2014 10:19 pm

Seishin wrote:
LastLegend wrote:Friend, start with the teaching first understand it thoroughly before starting to practice.


Knowledge and practice are both essential for the path. One shouldn't favour one over the other.

Gassho,
Seishin


You can either study the teaching while practicing, or study the teaching to gain a thorough understanding before practice. The later is to prevent blind practice. If people feel confident about their understanding, they can just practice.
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Re: Zen Buddhism

Postby Seishin » Sat Jan 11, 2014 10:24 pm

I'd agree that it's good to have a basic understanding, but not "understand it thoroughly before starting to practice". It could take more than a lifetime to understand the teachings and in all that time one could have become enlightened or have had insight through practice. Indeed, practice illuminates things that sometimes studying cannot. One only needs a basic understanding to start and benefit from practice.

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Re: Zen Buddhism

Postby LastLegend » Sat Jan 11, 2014 10:29 pm

Basic understanding works too. No problem. What I meant by thorough understanding is the confidence in the teaching to assist with practice.
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Re: Zen Buddhism

Postby LastLegend » Sat Jan 11, 2014 10:53 pm

KerryZenner wrote:I feel as if I am lost in the world. My intentions are to find enlightenment and follow the path Gautama Buddha laid out to do so. I am looking to find that enlightenment and use it in my life to be a better person. Those are my intentions. Nothing more, nothing less.


If you truly pursue enlightenment, then learn to relinquish attachment to this world while living and utilizing it.
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Re: Zen Buddhism

Postby Wayfarer » Sun Jan 12, 2014 11:33 pm

KerryZenner wrote:I feel as if I am lost in the world. My intentions are to find enlightenment and follow the path Gautama Buddha laid out to do so. I am looking to find that enlightenment and use it in my life to be a better person. Those are my intentions. Nothing more, nothing less.


Hi Kerry - there is a visiting teacher who posts here from time to time, Venerable Meido. He is associated with a Rinzai Zen centre in Chicago, but they are also building a centre outside of Madiscon WI (or at least I think that is where it is). I always find Ven. Meido's posts here and on other forums a beacon of clarity and would have no hesitation recommending his school on the basis of what I know. (I don't live in that part of the world although I have in-laws in Wisconsin, so I might be lucky enough to visit his centres one day.)

Details here.
Learn to do good, refrain from evil, purify the mind ~ this is the teaching of the Buddhas
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Re: How do I become Buddhist?

Postby Adamantine » Tue Jan 14, 2014 7:38 am

Off topic posts have been removed, thread is now again open for business. . . please stay on topic: sincere answers for the sincere OP's question.
Contentment is the ultimate wealth;
Detachment is the final happiness. ~Sri Saraha
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